Viticultural carbon can be used to be gauge offsets to fossil fuel carbon emissions. Carbon stored in a vineyard agro-ecosystem can be measured by traditional methods such as soil sampling, fruit harvest and pruning measurements, and the destructive harvest of the perennial woody structure (cordons, trunk, and roots). To fully characterize the dynamic nature of carbon storage in a vineyard, a regular schedule of sampling and vine removal would need to be undertaken over several decades. With the intent of eliminating the need to destructively harvest vines, a vineyard was sampled using a nondestructive terrestrial laser-scanning technique. Paired with mineral soil sampling and fruit yield, these methods provided a comprehensive spatial characterization of vineyard carbon storage. Vine perennial woody biomass was measured (n = 36) and soil was sampled to a depth of 1 meter (n = 24), then combined with average fruit yield and found to total 3,160 Mg organic carbon for a 32.3 hectare vineyard. Vines averaged 1.93 kg of dry biomass (0.87 kg carbon) and when combined with root biomass, constituted 2% (60 Mg) of the total perennial vineyard carbon.
- © 2011 by the American Society for Enology and Viticulture